Saturday, October 10, 2015

Beautiful Day At Roosevelt Island Fall For Arts Festival - Music, Painting, Crafts, Cardboard Car Construction & More

A beautiful day this afternoon for the annual Roosevelt Island Fall For Arts Festival.

There were artists painting murals on Rivercross and Blackwell House Lawn,

arts & crafts with the Roosevelt Island Day Nursery and

Roosevelt Island Historical Society,

RIHS Images From Judy Berdy

Roosevelt Island Explorers cardboard vehicles construction,


pony rides,

music at Meditation Steps

& more.

The Roosevelt Island Twitterverse adds:
Also, a wonderful concert by the Ray Abrams Big Band at the Meditation Steps

Terrific day at the Roosevelt Island Fall For Arts Festival.

A Visit To Roosevelt Island's Gallery RIVAA - Extra Bonus, Jazz With Art & The Impressionists

New York Street view recently visited Roosevelt Island, stopped in at Gallery RIVAA to check out the paintings and enjoyed the music of Art & the Impressionists.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Good News - Roosevelt Island F Train Service To And From Manhattan This Weekend

According to the MTA Weekender, there will be Roosevelt Island F train service

to and from Manhattan this weekend. That's 2 in a row.

The MTA adds:
F Trains run local in both directions between 71 Av and 21 St-Queensbridge

Weekends, 12:01 AM Sat to 5 AM Mon, Oct 10 - 12 • Oct 17 - 19

Trains stop at 67 Av, 63 Dr, Woodhaven Blvd, Grand, Elmhurst, Roosevelt Avs, 65 St, Northern Blvd, 46, Steinway and 36 Sts.

• Please allow additional travel time.
UPDATE 10:50 PM - The E Train is running on the F line including Roosevelt Island this weekend.

Landscape Architect Nicholas Quennell Describes Early Development of Roosevelt Island Residential Community - Designed Capobianco Field Backstop, Lighthouse Park Wetlands & East River 60th Street Pavilion

Architect Nicholas Quennell talks about the early development of Roosevelt Island as a residential community including his role designing Capobianco Field

and Lighthouse Park.

Mr Quennell was also the architect for the East River 60th Street Pavilion that is often mistaken for a roller coaster, the East River Roundabout, beneath the  Roosevelt Island Tram.

More on landscape architect Nicholas Quennell from The Cultural Landscape Foundation.

Upcoming Roosevelt Island Seniors Association Programs - Fresh Food For Seniors Orders Start October 12, RISA General Meeting October 13 And Annual Halloween Party October 31

The Roosevelt Island Seniors Association (RISA) reports:

RISA General Meeting

Tuesday October 13th, 2015


at The Senior Center (546 Main Street)

Guest Speakers- Buildings updates

Come and see what activities are planned for the new season.


Have your question answered Refreshments served
Also, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer's Fresh Food For Seniors Program starts this month for Roosevelt Island. Be sure to place your order as scheduled below. According to RISA:
Fresh Food For Seniors

Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer’s 2015 Senior Fresh Food Program lets you order a mixed bag of fresh, locally grown fruit and vegetables from local farmers for only $8! The program is pay-as-you-go, cash-only, on Monday or Tuesday one week ahead of each Wednesday delivery date.

1. Place your order for a pre-packed, $8 bag of fresh food at:
The Roosevelt Island Senior Center from 1pm-3pm

2. Pick up your produce the following Wednesday from 3pm-6pm at the same place, and enjoy the best seasonal fruits and vegetables!

For additional information contact

Sponsored by Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer.
Don't forget the annual RISA Halloween Party on October 31:



7P.M. to 10PM



Payment due by October 28th. See Barbara Parker at the RI Senior Center
Monday & Thursday 10:00am-12pm
Bubu Arya

Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday 10:00am-12noon
As reported yesterday, the Roosevelt Island Residents Association Island Services Committee told the RIRA Common Council October meeting:
... Enhanced Services at the Senior Center – There are a range of services that could be provided to the Senior Center by various NYC agencies. ISC will investigate what services are available to the Senior Center that can enhance its programs and activities....
If you are interested in RISA activities, check out their October 13 General Meeting at the Seniors Center (546) Main Street or contact them here.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

When Will Roosevelt Island F Train Subway Station Get Wireless Wi Fi Service From Transit Wireless Asks Resident On Twitter - Spring 2017 Is The Answer

 Image From Transit Wireless

According to Transit Wireless:
Now 100 Manhattan and Queens underground stations have Transit Wireless WiFi. Transit Wireless WiFi will be available to all 279 underground stations by 2017. Each station will host and provide cellular services, too. Riders will be able to use Transit Wireless WiFi to stay connected underground through email, social media and apps....
The Roosevelt Island Twitterverse asks:
The Transit Wireless Wi Fi service is currently available at these F train stop near Roosevelt Island but not Roosevelt Island or Lexington/63rd street.
Jackson Hts. – Roosevelt Ave.

21st St. – Queensbridge

57th St. – 6th Ave.

47th – 50th Sts. – Rockefeller Center

42nd St. – Bryant Park

34th St. – Herald Square

23rd St. – 6th Ave.

14th St. – 6th Ave.
More on Wireless Transit NYC subway service.

Notice where the opening NYC scenes of Wireless Transit Video are taken from - The Roosevelt Island Tram.

2017 is a big year for Roosevelt Island. We're scheduled to get East River ferry service, opening of Cornell Tech campus and wireless wi-fi F train subway station service. And the new Roosevelt Island NY Public Library branch is scheduled to open in late 2017 or 2018.

What else is coming?

RIRA Island Services Committee Reports On Roosevelt Island Tram Station Elevator, Control Of Rats, Sportspark, New Public Library, Boy Scouts, Post Office Customer Service & Enhanced Services At Senior Center

Below is Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Island Services Committee (ISC) Report

to the October 7, 2015 Common Council (CC) Meeting submitted by Chair Aaron Hamburger.



ISC met 9/28/15 with 11 members present from a membership of 13.

Tram Old & New Elevators – The old elevator was finally repaired at the end of August after an eight‐week outage. However, during September, this elevator experienced 4‐5 shutdowns, each lasting 1 – 3 days. At the beginning of October, the elevator was operating.

The project for the new elevators is being held‐up because the firm handling the design went bankrupt. RIOC can’t proceed with the project until the court handling the bankruptcy case transfers the design contract to a different design group. RIOC estimates it might be another six weeks before this situation is resolved. RIOC still estimates the new elevators will be in operation by the fall of 2016. ISC’s pessimistic estimate is operation in the first quarter, 2017.

Control of Rats – Commercial Trash – The Southtown commercial trash yard finally seems to be up to Dept. of Sanitation standards.

The trash bins at Wholesome Factory are not meeting regulations. ISC met with the store’s Manager, who promised that this situation would be corrected within a week. ISC will continue to occasionally inspect the site.

Sportspark – Pending a new inspection by ISC to determine how this facility is measuring up to correcting all its deficiencies, a meeting will be scheduled with RIOC officials.

New Public Library – Outside design work is completed. Design of the interior is underway. Estimated opening of the new library is still sometime during 2018.

Boy Scouts – ISC has been told that the Youth Center is working on re‐establishing a troop on RI. ISC’s project will remain “on hold” pending a discussion with the Youth Center on how the Boy Scout program will proceed.

Management of the RI Garden Club – ISC voted to deactivate this issue.

Two new issues were adopted:

Post Office Customer Service – Many residents have complained that customer service has deteriorated since two long‐ term counter clerks retired. ISC is meeting with the Post Office Supervisor to assess how this situation can be corrected

Enhanced Services at the Senior Center – There are a range of services that could be provided to the Senior Center by various NYC agencies. ISC will investigate what services are available to the Senior Center that can enhance its programs and activities.

Respectfully Submitted, Aaron Hamburger, ISC Chair

You're Invited To Roosevelt Island Fall For Arts Festival Saturday October 10 - Family Friendly Showcase Of Painting, Make Your Own Art, Music, Cardboard Vehicles & More

According to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) reports:

Join us this Saturday, October 10th for a free, family-friendly day of art & music at the 2015 Fall for Arts Festival, 11 AM to 4 PM. Bring your family and friends for an amazing, fun filled day of an artistic showcase of painting, free make-and-take art workshops and live music of talented New York City based Jazz musicians. The event will take place on the Lawn South of Rivercross (south of 505 Main Street), Gallery RIVAA (527 Main Street), Blackwell Park & Plaza and the Meditation Steps.

This is a rain or shine event.

This event is presented by the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation in partnership with Gallery RIVAA and the R.I. Explorers.

Event schedule can be found here:

The Roosevelt Island Explorers report:

We have another large-scale project for the Fall for Arts this Saturday – building vehicles that take us to/from/around RI today, and will try to invent some new ones for the future (the festivals theme is – celebration of RI history & future)…

All that from cardboard boxes (if you remember, we had built the Renaissance City last year)
Here's the cardboard box Roosevelt Island Explorers Renaissance City from 2014 Fall For Arts Festival at Southpoint Park.

The Roosevelt Island Historical Society (RIHS) is seeking volunteers to help out at the Fall For Arts Festival.

The 2015 Roosevelt Island Fall For Arts Festival was postponed from last Saturday to October 10 due to rain.

More scenes from 2014 Roosevelt Island Fall For Arts Festival.

Good Morning - Glorious Sunrise Seen From Roosevelt Island Today

From the Roosevelt Island Twitterverse.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Roosevelt Island Public Purpose Funds Applicant Presentations Start Friday October 9 - But NY State Authorities Budget Office Says No Change In Policy Guidance Prohibiting Practice

Image From RIOC

According to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC);
Please be advised that the 2015 Public Purpose Grant Community Review Process for applicant proposed programs and projects will be conducted at the Good Shepherd Community Center, 543 Main Street, beginning next Friday, October 9th. The presentations are open to the public and will be an opportunity to learn more about the programs and projects from community groups who are seeking funding. At the conclusion of each presentation, time will be reserved for questions and answers by public attendees and members of the Roosevelt Island Resident Association’s Public Purpose Grant Committee.

Below is the schedule of applicant presentations:

October 9th

8 PM – 8:30 PM: Roosevelt Island Seniors Association

8:30 PM – 9:00 PM: Roosevelt Island Youth Program (IDig2Learn)

9:00 PM– 9:30 PM: Roosevelt Island Disabled Association

October 13th

8 PM– 8:30 PM: Life Frames

8:30 PM – 9:00 PM: PS/IS 217 PTA

9:00 PM– 9:30 PM: RIVAA

October 14th

8 PM– 8:30 PM: Island Kids

8:30 PM– 9:00 PM: Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliance

9:00 PM- 9:30 PM: Roosevelt Island Historical Society

For more information, please call 212-832-4540. General concerns about grant funds and applicants should be directed to Sean Singh at, with a copy to David Evans,
A spokesperson for Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright adds:
The Governor has released Roosevelt Island’s Public Purpose Funds for this year. Assembly Member Seawright’s legislation clarifying RIOC’s ability to distribute Public Purpose Funds in the future has been packaged and sent to Albany for the Governor’s signature
As reported last February:
...2015 RIOC Public Purpose Funds distribution is in jeopardy due to this January 13 NY State Authorities Budget Office Policy Guidance stating:

... All state and local authorities which, as a matter of practice or policy, grant or loan their monies to such entities without specific legislative authorization are directed to immediately end such practice or policy so as to comply with applicable state law and the opinions of the State Attorney General and State Comptroller...
Apparently, there is no specific legislative authorization for RIOC to  grant Public Purpose Funds....
On October 2,  Roosevelt Island resident Helen Chirivas asked the NY State Authorities Budget Office:
Has there been an exception made to ABO guidance 15-01 with respect to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation (“RIOC”)?   

Earlier today, I received a RIOC announcement by phone that Public Purpose Funding (“PPF”) application presentations will be held on October 9, 13, and 14 from 8-10 PM at the Good Shepherd Chapel on Roosevelt Island.   The Public Purpose Funding process in prior years enabled RIOC to distribute funds to non-profits on RI; the process was suspended this year because of the explicit restrictions on a State agency distributing funding to non-profits contained in the ABO guidance.

Legislation SS Serrano/ASM Seawright prepared that would have exempted RIOC from the ABO guidance was passed by the Senate and Assembly but never signed by Governor Cuomo. 

Has there been some other development that exempts RIOC from the restrictions on funding as set forth in the above-referenced ABO guidance?  Has the ABO issued a new/updated guidance or specific statement that exempts RIOC from the restrictions?   If not, would you have any comments on RIOC proceeding with the distribution of funds despite ABO guidance 15-01? 
The Authorities Budget Office replied October 5 to Ms. Chirivas stating:
There have been no exceptions or changes made to ABO policy guidance 15-01 for any public authority. We suggest you contact your local legislator to find out the current status of the bill you reference below.
Well, that's confusing.
Public Purpose Funds is on the Agenda for tonight's Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Common Council meeting.

Will update when more information available..

Roosevelt Island Little Guppies Sportspark Swim Class For Ages 3-6 Starts Sunday October 11 - Registration Deadline Friday October 9

Roosevelt Island Parents' Network Coordinator Eva Bosbach reports:
Many of you asked for affordable follow-up swim classes to the Parent & Me program that would be offered for the next age group and directly by RIOC again. We have been in discussions with RIOC about this for quite a while and I am happy to forward to you below an announcement from the Sportspark Manager today about the new classes starting this Sunday. If you wish to preregister to secure your spot, the deadline is this Friday, October 9, at 5pm.

On of the nice things about these classes is that if you have a younger sibling the children can participate in a swim program at the same time - the younger one with the parent or caregiver in the water in the Parent & Me class ($5 per session for pre-registered Island families, slightly more for drop-ins and off-islanders) and the older one in the Little Guppies swim class by him/herself ($10 per session for preregistered RI children). Thank you RIOC!

Happy swimming :),
Read More

Below is the announcement from the RIOC Sportspark Manager:

New swim program, registration for the October- November session of Little Guppies water swim class is now available online. Classes are planned to take place on Sunday, October 11th, until the week of November 22nd. For more information or to register online, Visit and click on"Program Registration." Enrollment end date will be on Friday, October 9th, at 5 PM. If you have any questions please email

Note* The instructor will be in the water with the kids, parents are no longer needed to assist in the program.
According to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Little Guppies registration page:
Little guppies are mastering the ability to move themselves through the water. With the aid of swim bubbles and noodles, guppies are learning about breath control, proper arm and leg movements, buoyancy and deep water exploration. Resident rates are $80 per session ($10/class) or $12 drop-in. Non-resident rates are $120 per session ($15/class) or $17 drop-in.

A minimum of four participants must register by the enrollment end date in order for the class to take place. Participants must provide proof of residency to qualify for residents rates.

Roosevelt Island Dog Owners Ignore No Pet Or Dog Signage At Rivercross Lawn - Dog Does It's Business

The Roosevelt Island Twitterverse reports dog owners ignoring NO DOG signage on the Rivercross Lawn near Meditation Steps and allowing their pet to do its business.

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) March 9 Operations Advisory Committee meeting discussed the problems of people not cleaning up after their dogs. RIOC Director Margie Smith asked for greater enforcement

including tickets and fines for dog owners not obeying the law.

RIOC Public Safety Deputy Director Lynda Marmara said the Public Safety Officers have to see the dog poop violation in order to issue a summons.

The April 2015 Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Common Council meeting also discussed the problem of curbing your Roosevelt Island dog.

UPDATE 11 PM - Below is an example of Pick Up After Your Dog signage in Sunnyside Queens. Notice the sign says area is under video surveillance and $250 fine for violators.

Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) October 2015 Common Council Monthly Meeting Tonight - You're Invited To Attend And Raise Issues Of Concern

Image Of September 2015 RIRA Common Council Meeting

The Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Common Council will meet this evening, October 7, at 7:30 PM in the Good Shepherd Community Center (543 Main Street).

Here's the Agenda.

As always, prior to the start of each monthly meeting there is a Public Session in which residents can come and address the Common Council Delegates on any issue of concern.

The NYC Economic Development Corporation (EDC) presentation on Roosevelt Island Ferry service originally scheduled for tonight's RIRA meeting has been postponed due to an illness on the Presentation Team. The NYC EDC Ferry Presentation has been rescheduled for the November RIRA meeting.

A representative of Amalgamated Bank will speak at tonight's RIRA meeting about Neighborhood Re-Introduction and Community Initiatives.

You're invited to come to tonight's RIRA meeting and learn what's happening on Roosevelt Island.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Don't Worry, Roosevelt Island Simulated Explosion Tomorrow Afternoon Says NYC Office Of Emergency Management - The Blacklist TV Show Filming In Area

The NBC TV show The Blacklist
is filming on Roosevelt Island Wednesday October 7 inside the Steam Plant.
The NYC Office Of Emergency Management tweets:
A RIOC spokesperson clarifies that the simulated explosion will occur inside the steam plant and not on road.

You're Invited To Roosevelt Island Ferry Service Community Presentation By NYC Economic Development Corp Wednesday October 7 - Roosevelt Island Ferry Service Coming In 2017

Image From NYC EDC

The New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC) will be conducting a Citywide Ferry Service outreach presentation to the Roosevelt Island community Wednesday, October 7 at 7:30 PM in the Good Shepherd Community Center (543 Main Street). The EDC Roosevelt Island ferry presentation is jointly sponsored by Community Board 8's (CB 8) Roosevelt Island Committee and the Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA). Following the NYC EDC Ferry Presentation, RIRA will hold it's October Common Council meeting.

Come learn about plans for the Roosevelt Island, Astoria, LIC, 34th Street and Wall Street Ferry route,

Image From Jeanmarie Evelly


Roosevelt Island Oil Dock Potential Location For New Ferry Dock

and ask your ferry questions to the NYC EDC.

More information on Roosevelt Island ferry service at previous post and the NYC EDC.

UPDATE 1//7 - The NYC EDC Ferry Presentation at tonight's RIRA meeting has been cancelled due to an illness on the Presentation Team. The Ferry presentation has been rescheduled for the November RIRA meeting.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Roosevelt Island AVAC Garbage Removal System Out Of Service For Southtown Riverwalk & Roosevelt Landings Buildings - Garbage Bags & Smells Piling Up

Earlier today, I asked Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) President Charlene Indelidato:

The Riverwalk buildings AVAC system has been out of service for several days.

I have been told it will be out for "a while".

Any statement on what the AVAC problem is and when it will be fixed?

Also, any statement on Roosevelt Landings AVAC system being out of service.
The Riverwalk AVAC room chutes have been closed

resulting in garbage bags and smells piling up in Riverwalk basements.

RIOC President Indelicato replied:
The Riverwalk Building AVAC system has a major jamb in the main pipe, from valves L-1 to L-4, since Friday. The sanitation department (DSNY) has cleared part of the main pipe blockage, from valves L-1 to L-2, but the pipe continues to be jammed from valves L-3 to L-4. The DSNY will continue to remove the blockage tomorrow morning. They may have the main pipe cleared by tomorrow Noon.

There is currently garbage in the chutes. The DSNY requires the cooperation from the building superintendents, by locking the garbage chutes, so that they can continue to clear the jam. DSNY workers are going over now to Riverwalk to see the superintendents.

The DSNY doesn’t inform engineering every time there is a jam, so this is the first that I’ve heard of this particular blockage.

The Roosevelt Landings is an electrical problem. It should be resolved this week.
AVAC jams are often caused by residents placing items into the chutes that are not intended to go down the chutes

such as computers, broken up desks, basketballs and other large objects.

An upgrade to the Roosevelt Island AVAC garbage removal system was a subject of the September 29 Manhattan Community Board 8 Roosevelt Island committee.

Below is the Roosevelt Island AVAC Upgrade presentation

made by Envac representative Rosina Abramson (former RIOC President and Vice President).

Here's the full Envac AVAC Roosevelt Island presentation, including questions and answers from residents.

UPDATE 10/6 - The Riverwalk AVAC is working today.

Injured Kestrel Bird Healed And Released On Roosevelt Island By Wildlife Rehab Specialist Rossana Ceruzzi, President Of Wildlife Freedom Foundation - Shows How To Protect Migrating Birds From Crashing Into Hi Rise Buildings Too

An injured Kestrel bird was nursed back to health

Image From Rossana Ceruzzi

by Roosevelt Island resident Rossana Ceruzzi, a NY State and Federal licensed wildlife rehabilitator.

Image From Rossana Ceruzzi

Upon the Kestrel regaining its health, Ms Ceruzzi released the bird at Roosevelt Island's Southpoint Park on Tuesday September 29.

Ms Ceruzzi is the founder and President of the Wildlife Freedom Foundation Inc. (WFF), a non profit organization (501(c)(3) formed for the purpose of protecting and conserving wildlife and caring for stray animal populations in NYC.

According to Ms. Ceruzzi:
Among other causes, WFF works to control and reduce the population of stray cats in NYC through the Trap, Neuter, Return (TNR)  program, to get the cats adopted when possible, to provide care for stray cats who are not adopted or adoptable and advocate to prevent and end ALL forms of cruelty toward animals.

The video shows the release into the wild, after 3 days of cage rest, of an American Kestrel. Scientific Name: Falco Sparverius.

The raptor was found in distress and disoriented in the lobby of a residential building on Roosevelt Island. Many thanks to Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department for calling me promptly.

The American Kestrel was once one of the most common raptors in North America. It is in fact, the smallest and most common falcon in North America. These birds feed mainly on insects, mice and snakes, making this bird a very good friend to farmers! :)

See more about American Kestrels.

Reminder - This is Fall migration season!!

Roosevelt Island is part of The Atlantic Flyway, which many migrating birds use to reach warmer climates.

Please put decals on your windows or please draw blinds. Please make your windows visible to birds.

Some (sad) Facts:
Each migration season, twice a year, nearly one third of the bird species found in the United States, from 30 Warblers species to raptors, die by colliding with building. Roosevelt Island is not immune from this problem. Every year on RI, dozens and dozens of birds are either stunned by these collisions, seriously injured or killed.

Read more:

Architects around the world have created fantastic bird friendly structures that incorporate little or no exposed glass i.e. NYTimes building in NYC (by FX Fowle and Renzo Piano). However, designing a new structure to be bird friendly does not need to add much to the cost of construction. There are many different solutions. I am planning to submit some suggestions to both Cornell and Related in order to promote sustainable bird-friendly construction on Roosevelt Island.

An immediate "Quick Fix" for everyone:
  • ABC BirdTape to make home windows safer for birds. Decals.
  • It is an easy-to-apply tape that lets birds see glass while letting you see out, is easily applied.
  • Visit:
Check out more about the Wildlife Freedom Foundation at its website.

Awesome Photo Of Dancer Leaping Over Roosevelt Island FDR Four Freedoms Park

The Roosevelt Island Twitterverse reports:

A photo posted by nisha sondhe (@nishasondhe) on

Check out the ballerina posing at the Roosevelt Island F train subway station too.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Social Media Helps Anthony Weiner & Son Find A Kid Friendly Main Street Sweets On Roosevelt Island After Adventure On Roosevelt Island Tram

Former NYC Congressman and NYC Mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner took his son on a Roosevelt Island Tram adventure today. Mr. Weiner asked the Twitterverse for a Roosevelt Island kid friendly lunch place. The Twitterverse replied: